Newport News Tries Magalog for Spring Book

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Newport News Inc., New York, is using a magalog format for its spring 2003 catalog, which it debuted yesterday as part of its rebranding efforts.

The new Newport News book will be mailed to customers in January and is described by the company as "the product of comprehensive customer research."

Along with incorporating the look of a magazine with sections such as "Splurges and Steals" and "Trend Report," the book will include a new Newport News logo, upgraded photography and layout and an apparel collection "debuting the brand's product refinements."

"While many catalogs focus on merchandise-heavy spreads, Newport News has revamped its layout to be more editorial-focused and engage our customers in a unique way to deliver what they've told us they want," Geralynn Madonna, Newport News' president and chief operating officer, said in a statement.

The book will add a question-and-answer section addressing customer questions regarding style. Each catalog will focus on a different fashion problem. The first such section will provide advice on work apparel. The company described the format as reflecting an "informative, on-trend fashion magazine" with sections titled "Latest Looks," "Versatility" and "Must Haves," among others.

Newport News said it has "upgraded fabrications and perfected fits," while not increasing price points.

Newport News Inc. is owned by The Spiegel Group. Last year the women's catalog and online apparel and home furnishing retailer had 4.2 million customers, net sales of $449 million and distributed 254 million catalogs. Most styles are available in sizes 4 to 24.

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